The gentle pulsations of the piano of Wolfert Brederode have played a significant role on “April” and “Compass”, ECM recordings of singer Susanne Abbuehl. Now the Dutch pianist (born 1974, in Wassenaar near Den Haag) steps forward to lead a group of gifted players – clarinettist Claudio Puntin and drummer Samuel Rohrer from Switzerland, and Norwegian bassist Mats Eilertsen – all of whom commit their improvisational energies to the lyric flow of his music, its chamber music sensibility, and the slow-drifting currents of its river of sound. “Currents”, recorded at Oslo’s Rainbow Studio, is Brederode’s ECM leader debut.
Distinctive in its own right, Brederode’s music can also be viewed in the wider context of the developing ‘traditions’ of chamber jazz. The quartet’s contrapuntal improvising and its melodies, shared between clarinet and piano, may bring to mind vintage Jimmy Giuffre and Paul Bley collaborations, important influences on music at ECM: the harmonic palette of the Giuffre 3, of course, drew influence from 20th century composition, as do these players. Wolfert Brederode studied classical and jazz piano at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague, and clarinettist Claudio Puntin is active in both jazz and contemporary music - he has worked with, for example, the Ensemble Modern.
Brederode’s touch as a player is a poetic one, aptly so given the ongoing collaboration with singer Susanne Abbuehl. Susanne is co-composer of one piece here, the E.E. Cummings-inspired “As You July Me”, a piece from the Abbuehl band repertoire. Everything else here on “Currents” is from the leader’s pen.
In Holland the patient and reflective character of Brederode’s own music has drawn the attention of theatre directors and choreographers. As a sideman capable of exploring many aspects of jazz, he has collaborated with international musicians including Dave Liebman, Jeanne Lee, Arve Henriksen, Trygve Seim, Wolfgang Puschnig, Cristina Branco and many others.
The cast he has assembled on “Currents” has honed his music in concerts, and plays it with sensitivity. Clarinettist Claudio Puntin (Swiss-born and of Italian descent) will be known to ECM aficionados. His debut for the label, “Ylir”, with Icelandic singer/violinist Gerdur Gunnarsdottir, recorded 1997 and 1999 was widely praised. In addition to the Ensemble Modern, mentioned above, Puntin has worked with a wide range of artists including Fred Frith, Hermeto Pascoal, Jim Black, Dave Douglas, Nils Wogram, Jay Anderson and Anders Jormin.
Bassist Mats Eilertsen, one of Norway’s most resourceful young musicians appears also on guitarist Jacob Young’s new recording “Sideways” – released simultaneously with “Currents”. In addition to his ECM recordings with Young, Trygve Seim and The Source, and Parish with Bobo Stenson, Mats Eilertsen has played live with Kenny Wheeler, Pat Metheny, Nils Petter Molvær, John Taylor, Christian Wallumrød and many others.
Samuel Rohrer studied in Bern and at Boston’s Berklee College. He has worked across most expressions of contemporary improvising with players including Charles Gayle, Harald Haerter, Sirone, Michel Portal, Ferenc Snetberger, Joao Paulo, Markus Stockhausen, Arild Andersen, Wolfgang Muthspiel and many others. He also leads his own band, Tree.
Wolfert Brederode is on the road with Susanne Abbuehl in early November with dates including the Jazznojazz Festival in Zürich. On November 25, together with Puntin, Eilertsen and Rohrer, he celebrates the release of “Currents” with a special concert at Amsterdam’s Bimhuis club. For further dates consult our tour pages and Brederode’s web site